A stock image of a Supermarine Spitfire, which played a central role in the RAF's Second World War campaign (Picture: MOD).
A Spitfire narrowly avoided a mid-air collision with a light aircraft, an official report has revealed.
The Second World War fighter was involved in a near-miss with a Piper PA-28 after conducting aerobatics near Biggin Hill Airport, south-east London, on 29 September last year.
Following a victory roll, the Spitfire was flown in a climbing arc towards the other plane, following a victory roll.
A report by the UK Airprox Board (UKAB) stated it was "only by chance" one of the passengers on board the light aircraft spotted the ex-military plane "at the last second".
The Piper PA-28 pilot assessed the risk of collision as "high", telling investigators that the Spitfire was close enough to "fill the entire windscreen" and he could see "every rivet" as it flew past.
The Spitfire pilot was "content" that his flight path would not cause a collision but the light aircraft pilot "could easily have inadvertently turned towards the Spitfire when in close proximity", the UKAB stated.
The board concluded the Spitfire pilot's actions were "ill-advised" to the extent that "safety had been much reduced below the norm".